The Death of Sargon the Gardener

The Death of Sargon the Gardener
by Reilly Cox

Nevertheless, you must sing.
-Bede the Historian

Towards the end, torrential downpours.
_____The tomatoes grew so fat on the vine
___________that their cages could no longer hold them,
_____no matter how many ropes were tied
or stakes driven.
_____The portulaca grew
___________crazed with water, their thin petals
_____so large they become transparent
through which one could see pigment
_____suspended like memory above a body.
_____In the final days, the plants grew
___________that no one could open the doors
_____which would have troubled him
had he not already taken to lying
_____in bed long before.
___________If anyone asked
_____what that sound had been, he would
have told them that it is the sound of his
_____son’s ghost finally taking off his other
shoe upstairs, though that’s always how
___________endings sound:
_____soft breathing,
and the thump of a tomato outside.